Couch to 5K
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My pre-10k race run and my heart rate stats

The big 10k is on Sunday and have not done too much running this week as I didn't want to aggravate my shin or ankle. I have however just been out for a gentle 4k run round the village and I strapped my heart rate monitor on to see what it could reveal.

It was slow 4k in 28 minutes (last Parkrun I did was 30:19) but It was intended to see how my shin & ankle were and to make sure I was primed for Sunday.

I uploaded my Garmin to Endmondo (which I have just upgraded to the Pro version £10 a year to get extra stats - I just love a graph or two). It gives me a breakdown of my heart rate zones

Warm Up Zone 46 s (3%)

Fat Burning 6m 34s (23%)

Aerobic 18m 56s (65%)

Anaerobic 2m 43s (9%)

This is interesting as I think I was aiming more for the fat burning zone and looking at my time is where I would have thought I was most of the time but obviously not. I need to double check my maximum heart rate and my resting heart rate to check they are correct.

Oh the science of running!!!

5 Replies

This is very interesting. I didn't even realise these zones existed. I feel the need for technology. I thought all I needed was mapmyrun. But I can see how this heart rate stuff could improve your running. Thanks MG for the blog.


Interesting stuff thanks for the post. Have get to wear mine as the garmin already blows my mind lol.

Wishing you the very best for your run!


I've had my Garmin since the Summer and it's only now that I have start to dig the heart rate monitor out and try to work out how it works and why some people think it's a better way to train.

Not sure that I've got to grips with all the Zones yet and what it all means but I will get there.


good luck for Sunday. have fun :)


Looking forward to hearing the race reports coming in!

Perceived exertion and the talk test -

Step forward/backward from that link for quite a bit of useful information about heart rate and working out what figures are relevant for you (ie a bit more precisely than just 220-age).

My heart rate monitor also suggests that I'm running more into the higher bands (but I can't link mine up to do graphs and things - boo), but from the 'perceived exertion scale' I'm not so sure that I am. (I'm assuming, maybe wrongly, that 4-5 is fat-burning, 5-6/7 is aerobic and 7/8-9 is anaerobic - seems about right.) Then again, maybe I've been so tired this week because I was working at too high a heart rate for me.

---------------Perceived exertion scale from ------------------

In general, for most workouts you want to be at around Level 5-6. If you're doing interval training, you want your recovery to be around a 4-5 and your intensity blasts to be at around 8-9. As you'll see below, working at a level 10 isn't recommended for most workouts. For longer, slower workouts, keep your PE at Level 5 or lower.

Level 1: I'm watching TV and eating bon bons

Level 2: I'm comfortable and could maintain this pace all day long

Level 3: I'm still comfortable, but am breathing a bit harder

Level 4: I'm sweating a little, but feel good and can carry on a conversation effortlessly

Level 5: I'm just above comfortable, am sweating more and can still talk easily

Level 6: I can still talk, but am slightly breathless

Level 7: I can still talk, but I don't really want to. I'm sweating like a pig

Level 8: I can grunt in response to your questions and can only keep this pace for a short time period

Level 9: I am probably going to die

Level 10: I am dead


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